Czech surrealist Jan Švankmajer’s Alice (1988) is a creepy and disturbing adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s perennial literary classic, and perhaps the most faithful the original work. Combining a live-action Alice (Kristýna Kohoutová) with a Wonderland filled with threatening stop-motion characters, Švankmajer’s deliberately crude style of animation, use of close-ups, and rich design work lend the film a pervading sense of unease and a menacing dream-logic which marries a sly visual wit with piercing psychological insight. –BFI
Jan Švankmajer (born 4 September 1934 in Prague) is a Czech surrealist artist. His work spans several media. He is known for his surreal animations and features, which have greatly influenced other artists such as Tim Burton, Terry Gilliam, The Brothers Quay and many others. Švankmajer has gained a reputation over several decades for his distinctive use of stop-motion technique, and his ability to make surreal, nightmarish and yet somehow funny pictures. He is still making films in Prague. Švankmajer’s trademarks include very exaggerated sounds, often creating a very strange effect in all eating scenes. He often uses very sped-up sequences when people walk and interact. His movies often involve inanimate objects coming alive and being brought to life through stop-motion. Food is a favorite subject and medium. Stop-motion features in most of his work, though his feature films also include live action to varying degrees.
A lot of his movies, like the short film Down to the Cellar… read more
Disney this is not! I would imagine that Svankmajer’s take is about as close to the spirit of the source material as is possible. Rather oppressed in her “reality,” Alice learns how to fight back in… read review
Almost continuing on with his short film Jabberwocky – which combined another Lewis Carroll work with his take on childhood – Svankmajer made a pretty faithful telling of the famous story as his first… read review